Java is a programming languagea originally developed by James Gosling at Sun Microsystems (which is now a subsidiary of Oracle Corporation) and released in 1995 as a core component of Sun Microsystems’ Java platform. The language derives much of its syntax from C and C++ but has a simpler object model and fewer low-level facilities. Java applications are typically compiled to bytecode (class file) that can run on any Java Virtual Machine (JVM) regardless of computer architecture. Java is general-purpose, concurrent, class-based, and object-oriented, and is specifically designed to have as few implementation dependencies as possible. It is intended to let application developers “write once, run anywhere”. Java is considered by many as one of the most influential programming languages of the 20th century, and is widely used from application software to web applications.
The original and reference implementation Java compilers, virtual machines, and class libraries were developed by Sun from 1995. As of May 2007, in compliance with the specifications of the Java Community Process, Sun relicensed most of their Java technologies under the GNU General Public License. Others have also developed alternative implementations of these Sun technologies, such as the GNU Compiler for Java and GNU Classpath.